Serious Issue. Serious Analysis.

Sound an Alarm?

The October 2018 issue of The Atlantic , the venerable American monthly, is titled “Is Democracy Dying?” and contains a series of articles which, by and large, answer this question in the affirmative. Their authors though come to the rescue by suggesting ways the demise of democracy might be prevented.  These accounts of democratic decline… Continue reading “Sound an Alarm?”

Towards a new ‘populist’ party? UKIP’s interim manifesto and the future of the UK radical right

Current leader of UKIP, Gerard Batten, announced recently that he would be taking the party in a new, ‘populist’ direction. Batten defines populism (rather simply but also ambiguously) as ‘policies that are popular with voters’. In their latest manifesto, however, the party’s stance on a range of issues – from the NHS to Brexit, immigration, and prisons policy – suggests not… Continue reading “Towards a new ‘populist’ party? UKIP’s interim manifesto and the future of the UK radical right”

The Anti-Democratic Faces of Modernism – Part One

As Ronald Bush has pointed out, accounts of the ‘ideological alignment between the oppositional practices of imagism, “anti-democratic” forms of “individualism,” and anarchism’, may ‘[miss] a beat… by not considering the similarly “anti-democratic” features of John Stuart Mill’s antecedent liberalism.’[1] Treatments of modernist ideology may indeed underplay this inheritance, not only from Mill’s On Liberty… Continue reading “The Anti-Democratic Faces of Modernism – Part One”

The British Extreme Right, Reciprocal Radicalisation and constructions of the Other

Roger Eatwell coined the term ‘cumulative extremism’ in his influential article on community cohesion from 2006. He argued that ‘different forms of extremisms are constructed in discourse’ by extremist groups to legitimise their own activities, and also noted the ‘varieties of such interactions’. Sometimes, Eatwell argued, extremists could even identify positive features in their chosen… Continue reading “The British Extreme Right, Reciprocal Radicalisation and constructions of the Other”

Uniting Germany’s Radical Right

The recent right-wing surge in Germany is marked by an increasing degree of dispersal among radical-right actors. New parties, movements, groupuscules, think tanks and media outlets have emerged since 2013 (when the Alternative for Germany party, the AfD, was founded), fundamentally transforming the radical-right field and causing a lack of strategic coordination and ideological coherency.… Continue reading “Uniting Germany’s Radical Right”

Automated event extraction tools for the study of the far-right

Protest event analysis (PEA) is a method of quantitative content analysis with a long tradition in the study of collective mobilization. Despite its limitations,[i] it offers social scientists the opportunity to document several characteristics of protest over time and across different geographical locations. PEA defines the protest event and not the individual case study as… Continue reading “Automated event extraction tools for the study of the far-right”

Anti-Muslim Hate: The Definition Problem

The terms ‘Islamophobia’ and ‘Anti-Muslim hate’ are used regularly in news coverage of certain events. These have most recently involved incidences of a car ram-raiding worshippers outside a mosque in London, and in the depiction of Muslims in the press more generally. However the definition of ‘Islamophobia’ is contested within academic literature. The term entered… Continue reading “Anti-Muslim Hate: The Definition Problem”